Wednesday, 20 August 2014

It was chilly this morning under a clear sky, but it soon warmed up as the sun rose higher.

As I walked through the Greenhouse Grounds first thing this morning, the only birds that caught my interest were 3-4 WHITETHROAT and a KESTREL that sat up on one of the greenhouse rooves. I crossed into Migrant Alley and was very pleased to see 3 YELLOW WAGTAILS feeding around the horses on one of the paddocks, but not much else was out there. I completed the circular walk around Migrant Alley and walked along the boundary that joined the Greenhouse Grounds, it was here in the tall hedge that I spotted a REED WARBLER (76), another species for the August list, and a real good one to get on my patch  :-)

I re-entered the Greenhouse Grounds and in the hour it had taken me to walk a circuit of Migrant Alley the place had been transformed, it was thronging with birds! There was a feeding flock of GREENFINCH and LINNET on the floor where the scrub had been removed, about a dozen of each, these were joined by a couple of PIED WAGTAILS, a couple of ROBINS, half a dozen HOUSE SPARROWS, a SONGTHRUSH and 3 DUNNOCKS, I was suddenly aware of a scurrying bird running across the bare earth and was surprised to see a WHEATEAR! Two young GREEN WOODPECKERS flew in to join the party and nearby in the vegetation I saw CHIFFCHAFF, WILLOW WARBLER, BLACKCAP and GARDEN WARBLER plus the BULLFINCH family and around 30 GOLDFINCH feeding on the thistle heads, all this with the usual BLACKBIRD, WREN, BLUE TIT, GREAT TIT, and CHAFFINCH activity made for quite a spectacle  :-)

Immature Green woodpecker


I stayed around the Greenhouse Grounds and Migrant Alley for some time, always having the feeling that something else may be lurking, but nothing more showed up, and by 10:00hrs the fruit pickers turned up and the birds soon dispersed or scattered into cover. I walked up to my nearby sky watching seat, and during a 40 minute watch saw some birds of interest, including a pair of PEREGRINES that flew over low, as well as two BUZZARDS soaring, also seen were a SWIFT, a CORMORANT and a few HOUSE MARTINS feeding up with the SWALLOWS. The Wheatear seen earlier was now on the paddock fence line at Migrant Alley.

With most of the morning now gone, my visit to the woods and lakes was only brief, but I found NUTHATCH, GOLDCREST, JAY, GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER and another single Blackcap and 2 more Chiffchaff. On the lakes a GREY HERON was seen, plus 27 CANADA GEESE which had among them a white hybrid goose, and my old mate the BARNACLE GOOSE  :-)

On the way home I stopped off at the edge of the Wet Woods to see if I could improve on my Migrant Hawker Dragonfly images, i'll post them up tomorrow, but until then, here's a few Willow warbler shots from earlier in the day.

Willow Warbler, it didn't want to smile for the camera did it!!

Nearly forgot to say............I found this huge moth on the side of my house, I think its a Large Red Underwing, it certainly showed a striking red colour on its inner wings when it flew, one for the 'Moffers' out there  :-)

Not the best image, it was bit high up


Noushka said...

That is a great post deserving a lon comment!!
You are lucky to have this green peckie around!
Although we have a few in the garden, I haven't had a chance at one pic!!
The Wheatear and the Willow Warbler are gorgeous and so are your photos!
The moth is indeed a Large Red Underwing, I will publish one soon!
It is very similar to the Large French red underwing.
They usually hide from light and a good pic is a question of luck, I had mine on the veranda window!
Congratulations, enjoy your evening!

Marc Heath said...

Thats a a few super Green Woodpecker shots Warren, top work with them and not an easy bird to get a photo off at all, A* for these matey

Warren Baker said...

Thanks Noushka,
I'l look out for your Red Underwing image!

Warren Baker said...

Thanks Marc, I got a bit lucky with the GW images. The bird landed a few feet behind the Wheatear that I was already photographing and I was already concealed behind a fence. It's a game of luck this photography lark LoL